Goals for Setting Financial Priorities

financial planning

Top 10 things to know when budgeting your money and setting financial priorities.

1. Narrow your objectives.

You probably won’t be able to achieve every financial goal you’ve ever dreamed of. So identify your goals clearly and why they matter to you, and decide which are most important. By concentrating your efforts, you have a better chance of achieving what matters most.

2. Focus first on the goals that matter.

To accomplish primary goals, you will often need to put desirable but less important ones on the back burner.

3. Be prepared for conflicts.

Even worthy goals often conflict with one another. When faced with such a conflict, you should ask yourself questions like: Will one of the conflicting goals benefit more people than the other? Which goal will cause the greater harm if it is deferred?

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Tax Break for Struggling Homeowners Set to Expire

home tax breaks

The clock is ticking on a tax break that saves struggling homeowners from paying thousands of dollars to the IRS.

If the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act of 2007 does not get extended by Congress by the end of the year, homeowners will have to start paying income taxes on the portion of their mortgage that is forgiven in a foreclosure, short sale or principal reduction.

So if you owe $150,000 on your home and it sells for $100,000 in a foreclosure auction, the IRS could tax you on the remaining $50,000. For someone in the 25% tax bracket, that would mean paying $12,500 in taxes on the foreclosure. Similar taxes would apply for forgiven amounts in short sales and principal reductions.

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